Email By Daniela Intili Updated January 31, 2017 17:19:25 Photo: Erin McKinnon at GWS Giants training ahead of the inaugural AFLW season. (Supplied: GWS Giants) Map: Blacktown 2148 It’s rare for a new national sporting competition to begin.It’s even rarer for a new competition to generate the amount of excitement that’s surrounding the beginning of the new AFL women’s season, which kicks off this Friday.In just a few days, several hundred women have gone from amateurs to semi-professionals with great expectations.”Eventually, give it five or 10 years, we’ll be the number one sport in Australia.”That bold prediction comes from the new captain of the Brisbane Lions, Emma Zielke.”More girls are going to pick up the footy and start at an earlier age which will then drive participation, and then we’ll get better standards so in five or ten years we’ll have girls that have been playing footy since they were babies,” she said.In many ways the AFL rushed in the new competition, but that belies the history of women’s football.The first Australian rules women’s football match took place in 1915. From there it evolved and as more women and girls took up the game in local competitions and state leagues… Read full this story
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